I bet you didn't know it but your neighborhood is probably littered with gardeners gold! All you have to do is keep your eyes open and then be friendly enough to say HI! It will look like this:
In side these bags you can find one of the greatest compost materials and weed barrier products NOT on the market! I happened by a gentleman who was thatch raking and bagging in his front yard. I simply asked him if he had applied any chemical within the last three weeks and if I could haul away the bags for him! He was more than happy to let me have my share! Green bagged grass works well too. You just need to make sure that no chemical has been applied recently or that the lawn has been mowed three times since it was applied. I'm willing to bet that most of you have at least one neighbor that bags their clippings and would be more than willing to hand you the bags weekly. This weekend I used the grass to dress a garden bed after weeding.
In my opinion it looks better than anything you can buy and costs exactly a handshake! Use it around your garden rows and in your flower beds to keep the weeds down.
A 2-4 inch layer will go a long way keeping weeds at bay and moisture in the soil. Green grass clippings can be hot during decomposition so be sure not to pile to closely to tender vegetables. I also might suggest that you select a neighbor who's yard is pretty weed free so you are not introducing new problems. Be sure to recycle those trash bags too!